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88% Of Shoppers Prefer Free Shipping To Fast Shipping

88% Of Shoppers Prefer Free Shipping To Fast Shipping

When it comes to deciding whether they want their shipping fast or free, shoppers overwhelming prefer not to pay. In fact, 88% of shoppers said free shipping is more important than fast shipping, according to a holiday survey from Deloitte.

As many as 72% of surveyed shoppers plan to take advantage of free shipping offers this season, while 65% believe they should be allowed to order after Dec. 17 and still get free shipping.

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Despite the desire for free shipping being top of mind, the customer definition of “fast shipping” is faster than ever before: More than half (54%) of holiday shoppers said they define “fast shipping” as two days or less. Just 35% consider three- to four-day shipping “fast,” down from 42% last year and 63% in 2015.

With these increased expectations come a reluctance to pay more for expedited shipping: 64% say they would not be willing to pay extra for two-day shipping. Respondents indicated they would pay, on average, just under four dollars ($3.80) to guarantee next-day delivery.

Shipping even affects how people view buy online/pick up in-store. Shoppers list shipping charges (62%) as the chief reason to buy online/pick up in-store, followed by 48% who said they do so to get the item faster. Home appliances (45%), electronics (43%) and clothing (43%) top the list of categories shoppers plan to buy online but pick up in the physical store.

Shoppers not only want to see shipping improvements; they expect retailers to improve their returns processes. For example, 67% of consumers want retailers to provide an option to return an item to any store location, while 63% say they want refund options other than store credit.

More than half (51%) of survey respondents said they want a longer return window around the holidays, ranging from 30 to 90 days, and 41% want the option to return without a receipt.

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